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PostGIS Cookbook by Bborie Park, Stephen Vincent Mather, Thomas J. Kraft, Paolo Corti

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Normalizing imports

Often data used in a spatial database is imported from other sources. As such it may not be in a form that is useful for our current application. In such a case, it may be useful to write functions that will aid in transforming the data into a form that is more useful for our application. This is particularly the case when going from flat file formats, such as shapefiles, to relational databases such as PostgreSQL.

Note

A shapefile is a de facto as well as formal standard for the storage of spatial data, and is probably the most common delivery format for vector spatial data. A shapefile, in spite of its name, is never just one file, but a collection of files. It consists of at least *.shp (which contains geometry), *.shx (an ...

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